No. of Recommendations: 6
With Biden vs Ryan 2 days away, this seems a good time to re-visit Bill Clinton's words of 10 years ago:

After the -02 election, Clinton had an explanation for those who did not understand why Bush and the Repubs picked up congressional seats. The GOP victories that year, when national security was a big issue, were the exception to the historical record of the president's party usually losing seats in mid-terms. "When people are insecure, they'd rather have somebody who is strong and wrong than someone who's weak and right. That is because the number one criterion Americans have in picking a president is that he be a strong leader."

"Insecure" aptly describes millions of us at the moment in terms of employment, job (in-)security, shrinking of retirement savings, and a coat of tarnish covering what we once envisioned to be our Golden Years. That same word--insecure--also now undeniably describes many people like me on the Left side of the fence. Polls vary, but there's absolutely no doubt about Romney's gains following Obama's unexpected drubbing a week ago. Enter Joe Biden, who up 'til now has led a fairly comfortable 4 years as VP.

Howard Fineman, on Huffington, discusses Biden's potential to at least partially reverse the damage to the Dem campaign. Is Joe up to the task? No one knows what will happen Thursday, but 3 things, in Fineman's view, point to "yes."

Joe Biden has a certain steely toughness as well as physical fitness borne of overcoming brain aneurysms and the deaths of his first wife and one of their kids killed in a car crash when Biden was 30. Second, he has been studying hard. Biden aides told me 3 weeks ago that he had at that point spent 60 hours prepping. Since Friday, he has basically gone to ground to prepare for the 90-minute debate. Third, he just flat-out likes this kind of combat.

Biden admits he's no Brain. He'll say, yeah, I graduated 76th out of 85 in my law class at Syracuse. However, what he lacks in academics he more than makes up for in street smarts and genetic political talent. Throw in an eye for (and ability to) earn the loyalty of brilliant, dedicated staffers and an unerring instinct for the jugular, and you have the components of a combatant.

Will he have another "Joe Moment?" If he does, chances are it won't be when he's standing quietly and passively while a s**t-storm of Ryan's lies and half-truths rain down on him.
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